Britain’s Johanna Konta and Kyle Edmund have both been knocked out of the Australian Open in the opening round after suffering straight sets defeats in Melbourne.
World No. 13 Konta, who made it to the semifinals of the tournament in 2016, was the first big-name player to be knocked out of the tournament on Tuesday when Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur thrashed her 6-4 6-2 in just over an hour on 1573 Arena.
Konta has been troubled by a knee injury for more than a year and had not played in more than four months as she tried to regain her fitness ahead of the season opening Grand Slam.
Jabeur, the world No. 78, sealed victory when Konta’s defensive backhand sailed over the baseline, and she now faces either Madison Brengle or Caroline Garcia in the next round.
Kyle Edmund, also a previous Australian Open semifinalist, is also out of the tournament after being beaten by Dusan Lajovic in straight sets.
With heavy rain in Melbourne seeing play suspended on the outer courts on Monday, play resumed early in the morning with Edmund 5-2 up in the first set, but the British No. 1 lost the first three games after play resumed to hand Lajovic a route back into the first set.
The Serbian would eventually take the set on a tiebreak before going on to take the match 7-6 (7), 6-3, 7-6 (4).
Dan Evans is the only Brit to have made it to the second round so far, having beaten America’s Mackenzie McDonald in five sets, with Cameron Norrie, Katie Boulter, Harriet Dart and Heather Watson still to play.